I found a good post about writing through Wil Wheaton’s blog called Writing Tips for Non-Writers Who Don’t Want to Work at Writing by John Scalzi.
Scalzi presents a list of rules to follow to write better without exerting too much effort. I have tried to follow rule #7, “Try to write well every single time you write”, after getting introduced to Instant Messages and email years ago because I was afraid I would lose my ability to punctuate sentences correctly. Writing is about communicating, and it can be very frustrating to read terribly written IMs and forum posts.
In the comments there is some disagreement about the use of the word “alright” as opposed to “all right”. I have always used “alright” and never thought that it was the incorrect usage because I lost a spelling bee when I was in the 3rd grade due to that word. I spelled it “allright”. I was eliminated as soon as I got up there. I always remembered it. Now apparently the whole premise behind my loss was wrong. That spelling bee was a sham! At last, vindication!
Of course, language evolves. I think “alright” is a perfectly alright word to use (stupid spelling bee). I also wonder if ending sentences in a preposition will be accepted eventually. After all, the purpose of writing is to communicate. If you spend more time trying to be proper and by the book than is necessary to communicate to your audience, I think it has a tendency to be perceived as stuffy. of course I think that punctuation grammar and speeling is importent so it isnt like everything should be done away with
Please tell me you winced at that last “sentence”. B-)
Or, if proper usage gets in the way, it may have to go. I canâ€™t allow what we learned in English composition to disrupt the sound and rhythm of the narrative. Itâ€™s my attempt to remain invisible, not distract the reader from the story with obvious writing.